Monday, October 21, 2013

One Movie to Watch for Halloween-What would it be?

I am choosing THE HAUNTING, which as you all know comes from THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE (Shirley Jackson) who I revere.  I watched the opening of it the other day and was reminded on how far implied horror can take you. Mood, music, camera angles can scare me plenty.

What about you?


Olivia V. Ambrogio said...

Oooh, I *love* this question! And of course I don't want to suggest only one film, even though your question is about a single movie to watch.

ARSENIC AND OLD LACE is at the top of my list, though, for fun and seasonality.

For more suspense, I'd go with THE UNINVITED, a great ghost story.

For goofiness, I'd choose TREMORS or EIGHT-LEGGED FREAKS.

For meta-genre horror, I'd go with SCREAM or CABIN IN THE WOODS.

For classics, I'd go with DRACULA or HALLOWEEN.

And finally, for fun but effective horror, I'd go with the 2011 remake of FRIGHT NIGHT.

George said...

THE EXORCIST (1973) still scares me.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Great list, Olivia! I have seen most of them but not CAIN IN THE WOODS. Phil said it was too scary for me.
THE EXORCIST will always scare me.

Anonymous said...

We took my younger sister to see THE EXORCIST when she was 12, just before my parents and sisters moved to California in 1974. Perhaps it wasn't the smartest thing to do as she hid her eyes at several parts that were too intense. But hey, she wanted to see it and my mother wouldn't take her, right?

Jeff M.

Todd Mason said...

Among those I bet you haven't seen:

THREE CASES OF MURDER, for the first story of the three, and nearly as much for the third (featuring Orson Welles in good spirits, and bad spirits, as the case eventually is).

CARNIVAL OF SOULS, which eventually makes a virtue of the amateurs in its cast. Accept no remakes (though SIESTA isn't terrible, and got some of the better late Miles Davis playing on the soundtrack).

CABIN IN THE WOODS is clever enough for you to enjoy, but doesn't shrink from some gory effects.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I have seen CARNIVAL OF SOULS but in my less jittery days.
That head-spinning was too much for me. Don't always cover my eyes in time.
My biggest problem is being startled, which I have mentioned here many times. I don't mind gore as much as that.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

THE ENTITY and THE OMEN trilogy with the haunting music. I still remember the look Damien Thorn, as a cute little boy, gives in that last scene in part one (I think). Scariest scene: the raven attack.

Richard said...

Barbara says SAW. I don't watch much of those kind, though I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER isn't too bad. For pure scary suspense, ALIEN is always good.

Richard said...

Oh, there may have been a film or TV mini-series made of HARVEST HOME, a book I enjoyed a lot.

Anonymous said...

The Innocents, a wonderfully-evocative adaptation of Henry James's The Turn of the Screw. Deborah Kerr (my namesake) plays a young governess who gradually comes to believe that her charges (a brother and sister) are the objects of evil intentions from the ghosts of two servants. Moody black-and-white cinematography and a gradual ratcheting up of the tension make this one to watch.


Jerry House said...


John said...

One movie? Come on! I can never reduce it to one. I have a list I make each year of overlooked horror and ghost movies perfect for Halloween. One of the best I recently saw is a movie from Scotland called OUTCAST. I also recommend the truly grisly and frightening British movie WAKE WOOD. Very much in the vein of the original THE WICKER MAN.

BTW - I loved Cabin in the Woods. Just saw it a couple of weeks ago for the first time. Fans of H. P. Lovecraft definitely need to check it out for the bizarre twist that so comes a little after the halfway mark.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I guess I am going to have to watch it!

Erik Donald France said...

Yeah, The Haunting, Exorcist, Rosemary's Baby, The (first) Wicker Man, The Innocents, Nosferatu (any version), Heart of Glass.

Erik Donald France said...

p.s. Invasion of the Body Snatchers -- the creepy idea in both, for sure.

Dana King said...

I had forgotten about THE OMEN. Good choice.

The two that popped into my head were THE EXORCIST and POLTERGEIST.

pattinase (abbott) said...


Todd Mason said...

I think my favorite Oz horror remains THE LAST WAVE. For Bergman, HOUR OF THE WOLF, of course.

The most important aspects of CABIN IN THE WOODS are definitely not the jump scares.

sandra seamans said...

"Dead of Winter" isn't well known but I still remember watching it and being scared half to death. Very creepy movie. It was directed by Arthur Penn and stared Mary Steenburger and Roddy McDowall.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Don't know that I've seen it!

pattinase (abbott) said...

Lots of Internet troubles today. I am getting emails from some of you but the comments don't show up all the time.

Anders E said...

As hardly anyone else sticks to the limit of one single movie, why should I? These have not been mentioned yet.


For 1980s kitsch, THE LOST BOYS.

For weirdness, ERASERHEAD.

For claustrophobia, John Carpenter's THE THING.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I have not thought of THE LOST BOYS in many years.

Al Tucher said...

When THE EXORCIST was new in theaters, my grandmother took herself to see it. We never really figured out why, but we think she saw the senior citizens' discount advertised and took it to mean that she was required to go. (She grew up in Vienna under the last Habsburg emperor, and obedience to authority was in her genes.)

I asked her if she was scared.

"Not particularly."

pattinase (abbott) said...

I guess she had seen worse in real life rather than reel life.

Al Tucher said...

Well put!

Kelly Robinson said...

The original FRANKENSTEIN. James Whale was a genius.

Todd Mason said...

Though the first FRANKENSTEIN film I'm aware of is the Edison silent which has recently been pieced back together...

DEAD OF WINTER is pretty solid. Though perhaps a little too much Poor Maiden at the hands of blackguards, Steenburgen particularly makes it work.

Anders E said...

After some more thinking:

Snow White
Peeping Tom
Les Diaboliques
Carrie (1976)
The Mummy (1932)
Night of the Living Dead
Dawn of the Dead
The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane
Forbidden Planet
Let the Right One In (2008)
Bad Ronald
The Fog (1980)
Cat People (1942)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer

For dark humor:

The People Under the Stairs
Beware! The Blob (1972)
The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)
Night of the Comet

Perhaps too morbid choices:

Gimme Shelter
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Todd Mason said...

On the UIndiana Horror list, Kate Laity noted the other day that seeing just a piece of CARNIVAL OF SOULS gave her recurring nightmares, which ended after she was able to see the entirety of the film...

pattinase (abbott) said...

Me, too even after seeing it in its entirety. But this is not my favorite genre on screen.

Yvette said...

Arsenic and Old Lace.